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Five Lessons from the Broncos Game

Posted Dec 14, 2013

Here are your weekly five lessons from the past week's game.

Here are five lessons we learned from Thursday’s thrilling 27-20 win over the Denver Broncos.

1. Defense Gelling at Right Time– Players like Eric Weddle, Donald Butler and Manti Te’o spent all week heading into the game saying the same thing – that everything is starting to click on defense.  The results have been tangible, and sure enough, Defensive Coordinator John Pagano’s unit came through with one of the best defensive efforts in the NFL this season.  That’s because they held what has been to this point one of the best offenses in NFL history to a season-low 20 points.  They held Denver’s rushing attack to just 18 yards and came up with a timely turnover when it counted in the fourth quarter.  After the game, Weddle agreed that the defense is gelling at the correct time.

“I think these last three games, we have really tried to get better and we’ve really stressed the way we play in the back end. If we play together, communicate and get lined up, we can play with anyone, in our minds. We have played well these last three weeks and that is because we are confident and we are gelling at the right time.”


2. Allen Deserves Rookie of the Year – This is the exact same headline we had here a few days ago after the Giants game.  And you know what?  It rings even truer today.  Keenan Allen had a pair of touchdowns in the first half of the highlight reel variety.  His first was a dashing and hurdling effort that saw him power his way into the end zone and light the social media world abuzz.  The second was a clutch catch toward the end of the first half to give the Bolts a 17-10 lead.  Still, should he win Rookie of the Year, which he richly deserves, many will look back on his first touchdown as one that cemented his place with coming on the national stage.  According to Allen, he was going to do whatever it took to get into the end zone:

“Philip gave me the ball pretty quick so I was able to get my head around it.  I saw green grass and the touchdown and two defenders in front of me.  It was all a mindset.  I wasn’t going to be denied.”

 

3. Mathews’ Game Speaks Volumes –Ryan Mathews is a man of few words off the field, and he’s gotten even less talk from the national media over the course of the season.  That’s all about to change.  Mathews tied the career high he set just four days prior with 29, this time rushing for 127 yards and one touchdown.  He tied LeSean McCoy and Adrian Peterson for the most 100-yard rushing games of the year with five, and also topped 1,000 yards on the season with the effort. Combined with receptions, Mathews has had an incredible 62 touches in a matter of five days.  Following the game, Nick Hardwick gushed about the way Mathews is running the ball:

“He’s just getting downhill. He’s being very clear and concise with his cuts and just making it happen. He knows where he wants to go and he’s getting there in a hurry.  It all starts up front, and he’s doing a hell of a job.”

4. Corey is Crushing It– There was a lot of heroes on defense, but perhaps no one had the impact that defensive end Corey Liuget had.  He had a number of run stuffs and pressures on Peyton Manning along with blasting through two blockers to force a Marcus Gilchrist sack in the second quarter. But his highlight play came in the fourth quarter.  Never giving up, he bulled his way to Manning and hit him as he released the ball, which floated in the air long enough for Thomas Keiser to get under it and record the interception.  It was a game-changing play, and on Friday, McCoy spoke about the impact Liuget had on the defensive side of the ball:

“Corey's play is a perfect example of when you play snap to whistle, good things are going to happen. They have a double on him and he splits it to keep fighting and as Peyton goes to throw he hits it. It's all about effort. A lot of the game is your attitude, your mindset and the effort of playing until the whistle blows every game.”

5. Ready for the Raiders –It was a euphoric  win Thursday night in Denver as indicated by the photos  of the locker room celebration and McCoy’s victory speech.  But the Bolts know it means nothing if they don’t win next week at home against the Oakland Raiders.  McCoy said the team needs the fans to be at their best when the team returns home for the final two regular season games of the year:

“We have a big game coming up next Sunday at home against the Raiders. We need all the fans there. They have been great all year at home. We always talk about the players having the best game of the year; well we need the best support of the year. We need to get them out there and be as loud as possible. I think coming off this win really should energize our fans. We're looking forward to a full house to get it going.”

 

With all the excitement following the big win, next week’s game against the Oakland Raiders is one you surely don’t want to miss!  McCoy said the team needs the best crowd to date, and you can click here to purchase.

Now, you can stay in touch with the team anytime, anywhere, on your mobile device with the official app of the San Diego Chargers.
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